Quickest way to pass! How long does it take to pass driving test UK?

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How long does it take to pass a driving test?

You can’t avoid learning to drive, but what’s the quickest way to pass the driving test?

The 7 Steps are:

  1. Apply for your provisional licence NOW!
  2. Start “Swotting” for the theory test before your licence arrives!
  3. Book theory test when the licence arrives and pass theory at the first attempt.
  4. Start driving lessons as soon as the provisional arrives.
  5. Start supervised driving practice with parents or friends after a few driving lessons. Don’t forget learner driver insurance to protect the no-claims bonus of the person’s car you are using.
  6. Book practical test as soon as you pass the theory
  7. Pass your driving test the first time

Now you know the quickest way to pass the driving test, read on to see what you need to do in detail.

1. Apply for your provisional driving licence online

Apply for your provisional licence as soon as possible, as you can’t book your theory test without it.

For more information on applying for a provisional driving licence.

2. Start revising for your theory test

It’s never too early to start revising for your theory test.

Before your licence arrives, start cramming and be ready to take your test as soon as possible.

Having a grip on knowledge for the theory test can also help speed up practice for the practical driving test.

You’ll be more knowledgeable of the road rules, and your driving instructor will need to spend less time teaching you theory, giving you more time doing the actual driving.

3. Book your theory test online

Get your theory test booked as soon as your provisional licence arrives.

Find out more about booking your theory test.

You cannot book your practical driving test until you’ve passed the theory.

4. Book your driving lessons

Selecting the right driving instructor is crucial to passing your test quickly. Find someone who understands your intentions and ensure they have the time available. You and your instructor should work together as a team with a common goal.

You can find out more about selecting the right driving instructor.

How many hours to pass the driving test?

The DVLA says that the average hours to pass the driving test for people who pass the first time is around 45 hours of lessons with a driving instructor, supplemented by 20 hours of supervised practice with family or friends.

Most learners’ average time to pass driving test is around four to five months. If you don’t have time for that? No problem. Taking two 2–hour lessons each week will see you hit the 45-hour mark in just eleven weeks. And should be coupled with two one-hour supervised sessions a week.

Two-hour lessons can make a big difference. You get more time on the road, drive greater distances and encounter more road types and driving conditions. The extra driving also helps increase your awareness and confidence as you become more comfortable behind the wheel.

And don’t forget how many hours driving before the test you have will increase your chance of passing.

Intensive driving courses

Another option – although quite stressful – is an intensive one-week-long driving course that condenses all your driving lessons into seven days.

It’s not the ideal way to learn and can be very tiring. However, it can be the quickest way to pass your driving test. Of course, you’ll need to pay upfront and have already passed your theory test. But it is certainly a quick way to get the hours under your belt!


Don’t be fooled into paying for your provisional licence and theory & practical tests through a third-party website. There’s no benefit; they could charge you up to three times the original price. Learning to drive is expensive enough already!

5. Supervised driving practice with parents or a friend

Supervised driving sessions can be critical factors that affect your chance of success. According to the DVSA, learners who pass their test the first time usually have around 20 hours of supervised driving with family members or friends. But, if you can have more, then take them! The more time you spend driving, the higher your likelihood of passing.

Before you start, though, we strongly recommend having a few lessons with your qualified driving instructor first.

Find out more about supervised driving.

Don’t forget! Every minute you’re in a car as a passenger is also a learning opportunity. Observe what others do and ask questions. (But be careful not to be too critical – no one likes a backseat driver!)

Learner driver insurance for driving in someone else's car

To go out with a family member or friend in their car, you’ll need to make sure you have insurance cover. You can either be added as an additional driver on the car owner’s existing insurance policy or get learner driver insurance.

Learner driver insurance enables you to receive additional driving practice from a family member or friend on top of driving lessons.

Some car owners will happily put you on their insurance whilst supervising you, but the owner may prefer you to take out learner driver insurance in your name.

There are many pros to taking out learner driver insurance. If the car does receive a knock while you are driving, the owner’s no-claims bonus will not be affected.

A note of precaution! The legal age for someone to supervise you is 21, and they must have held a full licence for at least three years.

However, many learner driver insurance companies will require that person to be 25 plus. Not a problem if it’s mum or dad supervising you, but it may be an issue if you ask a mate.

6. Book the practical driving test

Book your practical driving test as soon as you pass your driving theory test.

Ideally, you should book the test at your local driving test centre as you’ll be familiar with the roads. However, you could always look at other driving test centres if the wait times are too long. It could be risky, though, as you’ll be in unfamiliar territory.

Top tip! Driving test slots often become available because of cancellations. If you’ve already booked your place, continue to check with the driving test centre because an earlier test might come up.

7. Pass your driving test

When your driving instructor believes you are ready for the practical! Go for it, and best of luck. See our tips on passing the test and coping with driving test nerves to help you achieve your goal.

Best of luck!